A small commercial ship was hijacked off the coast of Somalia on Friday, according to the British Maritime Trade Agency. Somali pirates are suspected of being the perpetrators of this recent incident.
The vessel was said to have been captured when traveling near Puntland, an area that has been the base of pirating operations in the past.
Last week, the European Union reported that the bulk carrier MV Ruen was also the victim of a hijacking in the nearby Arabian Sea. It was the first successful act of piracy from the African country since 2017.
Since the start of the October war between Israel and Hamas, there has been a substantial increase in attacks on ocean carriers in the Red Sea by Yemen’s Houthi rebels. The Iran-backed Islamist group announced they will attack all shipping that they believe is related to Israeli interests.
Maritime security experts have suggested that the resurgence of piracy in the Horn of Africa may be the result of opportunist elements taking advantage of the deteriorating security situation in the region.
The waterways off East Africa have been subject to an international naval presence in the past, to protect critical trade routes from local incursion.
Somalia’s maritime authorities have announced that they will be increasing their patrols in the area.